You cannot currently transfer a licence, however your council may be able to advise you on steps to take to give a prospective buyer assurance. A licence is specific to both those named on an application form, and the premises. A new operator will have to apply for a new licence while the old licence continues to run.
Depending on your situation, you might also need to take the following into account:
- The old licence was issued based on an older policy
You'll need to make a new licence application, regardless of the policies in play when the old licence was issued. The council will consider your application on its merits in accordance with their policies at that time. But there should be no presumption that they will automatically grant you your licence after application.
If a licence holder dies, the executor holds the licence for a (possibly extendable) three-month period.
If a licence holder is no longer holding the licence, there is a six-week period for the remaining ones to apply for a new licence. If this is not done within the six-week period, the licence would no longer be valid.
The council might want to support you to continue to provide short-term lets without significant delay. If so, they could grant you a temporary licence pending consideration of your licence application.
Facilitating sale of existing short-term lets
There may be occasions when prospective buyers of short-term let businesses are asked by their lenders to obtain assurance about being able to get a short-term let licence in order to complete their purchase.
Licensing authorities have powers to process variation applications and they may choose to do so where the short-term let host is a corporate entity, and the incoming purchaser is added as a director.